Sunday, April 09, 2006

Nicoderm marketing interests have been writing media op-ed letters. Additionally it appears that Nicoderm has a dubious connection with MPAAT.

Here are some excerpts from this RWJF grant designed to control the media. (RWJF owns 80,000,000 shares of Nicoderm manufacturer Johnson & Johnson company):

Helped statewide coalitions develop op-ed pieces and letters to the editor that were timed to coincide with legislative campaigns to raise cigarette excise taxes.

Worked with grantees to help them understand the November 1998 $206 billion Master Settlement Agreement, and develop plans and strategies to secure funds from the settlement for state tobacco ...........control.

Developed training materials for grantees, including Media Plan Guidelines and a Proposed Tobacco Settlement Issues Review Paper.

RWJF selected the American Medical Association (AMA) as the national program office because it deemed that the AMA, the national membership organization for physicians, had the resources and credibility........

(The AMA) Was a large organization on the "right" side of the tobacco issue

Served as a liaison between SmokeLess States and other national organizations involved in tobacco control ........ The national program office worked with the Center for Tobacco-Free Kids, the AMA, the American Cancer Society, IMPACT, the National Cancer Institute's ASSIST program, the CDC's Office on Smoking and Health, American Legacy Foundation, American Lung Association, American Heart Association, the Advocacy Institute, National Institutes of Health, the National African American Tobacco Prevention Network and APPEAL. The national program office also reached out to state medical societies to encourage them to embrace tobacco-related issues and work with their statewide coalitions.

Authorized by the RWJF Board of Trustees in April 1993 for up to $10 million; re-authorized in April 1996 for up to $20 million, July 1998 for up to $6 million, and July 2000 for up to $52 million. Total authorizations were up to $88 million.

In addition, closer to home here in Minnesota, Nicoderm interests at RWJF had an in-house mole in our own MPAAT:

The first deputy director, Kathleen C. Harty, M.Ed., had spent many years working on tobacco-control issues at the Minnesota Department of Health and was a recipient of the Surgeon General's Medallion for her work in tobacco control. In February 1999, Harty left SmokeLess States (a RWJF program) to become executive director for the Minnesota Partnership for Action Against Tobacco (MPAAT), a nonprofit agency funded by the Minnesota tobacco settlement money.

The above paragraph highlights a serious conflict of interest between a private pharmaceutical nicotine company, its foundation (RWJF), and a supposedly unbiased MPAAT.

Read the above excerpts directly from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) website here. (found under appendix 1)

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